BMW hasn’t made any claims that the current 1 Series range will get an even faster version than the M135i xDrive we have on sale today. And yet, a camouflaged BMW 1 Series was recently caught on tape on the Nurburgring, doing some pretty hot laps. According to the video uploader, this could be an upcoming BMW M140i model but there’s no mention of such plans from BMW anywhere.
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To make things even more interesting, BMW actually said they are not planning on developing a car that’s faster than the M135i xDrive for the current 1 Series range.
However, as you can see from the footage, this car is completely wrapped in camo and seems to be going at it pretty hard. We don’t have any info regarding a new, higher-performance model coming in from Munich but the fact that there’s an M135i visible in a couple of shots, behind the camouflaged car, seems to indicate that the camouflaged car isn’t, in fact, an M135i. It may point to some kind of benchmark being carried out.
So what would be the point of an M140i? Well, it could be a rival for the currently unchallenged Mercedes-AMG A45 S, a car that is ruling the hot hatch segment at the moment. If BMW were to actually give it a run for its money, the new M140i would need over 400 HP and a trick all-wheel drive system that would allow a lot more than 50 percent of the power to go to the rear wheels.
Since the 1 Series range uses the UKL platform, the engine can’t increase in size so we should be looking at a 2.0 liter 4-cylinder mill here.
That said, if the M140i is confirmed, it would have the most powerful 2.0 petrol engine BMW ever made, beating the current champion installed in the M135i, MINI JCW Clubman and MINI JCW Countryman.
There’s also another possible scenario: this could be just an older prototype. And nothing more.